Subedar & Hony Captain(Retd) Har Singh, Vr.C(Bar), Indian Army

Subedar & Hony Captain(Retd) Har Singh, Vr.C(Bar)

During the Kashmir operations in 1947-48, Jemadar Har Singh was serving with the 4 Kumaon regiment.

On 10th December 1947, in Uri, Jemadar Har Singh's platoon was given the task of protecting the rear while his company was withdrawing. An enemy party of about 50 attempted to ambush the attacking company. Inspite of his platoon strength being only 21 and the enemy more than two and half times, Jemadar Har Singh coolly, with confidence and cheerfulness, told his platoon, most of which consisted of "ex-boys" recently joined from the Regimental Centre, that this was a chance for him to judge their capabilities as fighting soldiers. This had a terrific effect on the morale of the boys and they took a position and waited for the advancing enemy.

Jemadar Har Singh organised his platoon in such a way that the enemy was allowed to come within a range of 25 yards where he had selected his 'killing' ground. No sooner the enemy came within this 'killing ground' the platoon let loose a volley of rifle, LMG and grenade fire. The enemy was taken completely by surprise as a result of which 25 raiders were killed and the remainder wounded. He then swooped down on the enemy with fixed bayonets with his platoon, and captured three prisoners, including the commander of the party.

Jemadar Har Singh showed good leadership in handling a very grave situation and saved heavy casualties to his company. For this he was awarded the VrC.

On 4th March 1948, a platoon of 4 Kumaon commanded by Jemadar Har Singh was given the task of left flank protection to another company in Nikhaura, and to stage a false attack towards another feature. This was a very steep feature with barely a few holds and under four to five feet of snow. The enemy was holding this dominating hill.

During the attack, the platoon came under heavy automatic and rifle fire. Jemadar Har Singh immediately ordered his men to take up positions and then crawled forward to the leading section. After a quick "recce" he ordered the leading section to hold the enemy and draw their attention towards them. He then very skilfully and bravely manoeuvred his remaining two sections to as near as 25 yards of the enemy defences.

From here, personally controlling the fire of his two sections with extremely heavy accurate rifle and LMG fire and by use of grenades, his platoon took a heavy toll of the enemy. He then charged the enemy with fixed bayonets and captured the feature. He quickly reorganised his platoon and beat off two very strong enemy counter-attacks. He held this feature for two hours and inflicted very heavy casualties on the enemy. Having completed his task, he withdrew under orders from the rear.

By his cool, calm and quick appreciation of the situation, his determined action and offensive spirit, this JCO dealt a shattering blow to the enemy. During the withdrawal he carried a severely wounded sepoy on his shoulders all the way back(1200 yards) under heavy fire.

Throughout the operations, Jemadar Har Singh set an example of excellent leadership, bravery and quick offensive action to all ranks in the battalion. For this he was awarded the Bar to VrC.